Monday, 8 April 2013

BlogTourNYC || Sponsor Profile: Du Verre, The Hardware Co.

One of the perks of BlogTourNYC was being able to spend time with the representatives of the sponsors. As a small business owner myself, it is always fascinating to me to hear how others started up. So that is why meeting and spending time with Gina Lubin, CEO and Creative Director of Du Verre Hardware, was such a huge pleasure. Du Verre design and manufacture cabinet hardware. They work with a raft of highly respected designers to create unique collections of knobs and pulls for fine furniture and interiors. I love that the hardware is finished by hand, which means there are small variations in the final colour. So, not only does this add warmth and beauty to each piece, it makes each piece completely unique. 

Images kindly supplied by Du Verre Hardware || Clock-wise from Top Left: TORONTO KITCHEN with Scot Laughton and Heinz Pfleger // POMEGRANATE by Heinz Pfleger // LOTUS by William Harvey // RIO COLLECTION by Gina Lubin 

We got to spend time with Gina at the dinner on our first night at Isabella's. After a long day of travelling, my chat wasn't up to much (when is it ever), but luckily there were plenty more opportunities to catch up. Gina kindly agreed to do a short interview focusing on the business side of things which was super interesting. 

So, I'm always curious to know how others work when they run their own businesses. Can you describe a typical day for you?

My days at Du Verre are quite varied. My office is full of samples, prototypes, hardware, photography equipment, drawings and inspiration pieces. Did I mention computers?! There is always music playing.

On a good day, there is a hum of activity and we’re all in the zone each doing our part. We might be approving a new range of hardware, contemplating new finishes, planning a product launch or trying to figure out the Internet! Our head office is our think tank and laboratory all at the same time.

You personally designed the Rio range (see above bottom left), are you working on any new designs currently?

Yes. We have a new collection coming out very soon. It is another great William Harvey design. It’s all curves! I love it.

As for me, I am always drawing and sculpting. There should be some more original Gina Lubin designs by the end of the year. I’d love to have more of my pieces on offer but work sometimes gets in the way.

When you and Gavin set up Du Verre Hardware, how did you divide up the responsibilities between yourselves?

Gavin is not only my partner but my husband as well. We have worked successfully together for many years. I am the upfront person. He is more behind the scenes.

We both work on the design side. Gavin is our photographer and has created all the beautiful imagery that we use on our website and in our catalogues. I curate the designs, bring the ideas together and transform them into hardware.

What are you most proud of?

I am proud of the hardware that we produce. Sometimes when I see the incredible people and companies that are using our hardware, I am blown away. We are a small boutique firm and yet we have earned the respect of the design community.

What advice can you give to anyone thinking of setting up their own business?

Having your own business is not for the faint of heart but I always knew that it was what I wanted. I guess it comes down to passion and hard work. So, it helps to do something you love. 

My business, while quite small compared to some, has been the most fabulous experience. It has taken me around the world. I have met incredible people and worked in several countries. And, we have managed to do it on our own terms. What more can you ask?

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I found Gina really inspiring and motivating and I hope you have too. She has spurred me on even more with my business West Egg, for which I am very grateful. Thank you Gina so much for sponsoring BlogTourNYC, it was amazing to meet you and I can't wait to see you in London in September! 

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